Google TV Nears Launch

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Google's won the battle over search. Will they win the battle over ratings, too?

    The company's putting the finishing touches on its new TV service.. Sony's already on board, and Samsung just announced that they may incorporate Google's software into their televisions. More partners are expected, but Google said that they wouldn't reveal those companies' identities.

    Google CEO Eric Schmidt talked about Googe TV this week  at a trade show in Berlin.  He said it would be available to customers around the world next year. It supposed to be available here by the fall.

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    Google TV is still very much under wraps, but the service will likely provide TV viewers with access to content from a variety of sources. Like Tivo for Internet video, the service will live on your television or a set-top box, and will search across various services, possibly including Netflix and Hulu. It will support apps, as well as familiar input devices like a remote control.

    If you have an Android phone, you'll be able to control the TV with your phone, which you've probably never really wanted to do but it's still kind of neat.

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    It's expected to cost as little as $100, with more fully-featured devices running around $200. The service will compete with Apple's just-announced next-generation Apple TV, a compact box that streams movies, TV shows, and services such as Netflix and YouTube.